Wine Tasting

A Professional Handbook


  • Ronald Jackson, Brock University, Cool Climate Oenology and Viticulture Institute, St. Catharine's, Ontario, Canada

One of the most respected professionals in the wine industry-Ron Jackson, author of Wine Science (now in its second edition)- covers all practical and theoretical aspects of wine tasting in his new book. It details the basic techniques used by professionals to sense all visual, gustatory, and olfactory wine properties (sight, taste, and smell). It also describes the physiologic, psychologic, and physicochemical origins of sensory perception and discusses wine types to illustrate the characteristic features that distinguish the majority of wines. A large portion of the book is dedicated to the practical concerns of preparing and performing wine assessments. Readers are instructed in how to differentiate between the various types of wine tastings (each requiring its own design, tasting sheets, training, skill measurement, and analysis). Included is a general overview of the types and sources of wine quality and how wine is most appropriately paired with food. Special features include a flow chart of wine tasting steps, details of errors to avoid, procedures for training and testing sensory skills, sample tasting sheets, original data from 14+ years of training tasters, and numerous tables, charts, and figures.
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For people involved in wine tastings, commercial judging, quality assessment of wineries, wine societies, wine appreciation courses, or training of tasters (wineries, wine merchants, university courses). Also serious wine connoisseurs who want to maximize their perception and appreciation of wine.


Book information

  • Published: February 2002
  • ISBN: 978-0-12-379076-7


"This volume details the practical and theoretical aspects of critical wine tasting, in the context of human sensory perception, from the techniques used by professionals to assess wine properties and quality, to the physiological, psychological and physiochemical origins of sensory perception...Numerous tables, charts and figures throughout this volume provide excellent illustrative material to support the detailed information presented in text. In conclusion, this comprehensive volume is highly recommended to any individuals involved in wine tasting, from professional tasters and those who train tasters and design tastings, to amateur wine connoisseurs, who want unbiased information on how to maximize their perception and appreciation of wine." - Carbohydrate Polymers (2005) "This book by Dr. Jackson is very entertaining and informative to read. He has succeeded in writing a wine tasting book that would appeal to the experienced wine aficionado as well as to a faculty member teaching a beginning wine sensory or wine tasting class...This author enjoyed this book and would recommend it. In fact I am seriously contemplating using it in my Wine Sensory Evaluation course." - H. Heymann, Department of Viticulture and Enology, University of California- Davis, September 2004) "...very entertaining and informative to read. ...would appeal to the experienced wine aficionado as well as the faculty member teaching a beginning wine sensory or wine tasting class." -FOOD QUALITY AND PREFERENCE (2003) "...a solid text that offers practical information on the sensations of wine for many types of readers. Extensive use of diagrams, tables, charts, and illustrations enhances the volume...a useful book that will find a number of audiences. It deserves a place in many academic collections not for what it has to tell us about wine, but about human physiological responses to the seduction of the liquid. Recommended." -E STREAMS (June 2003) "Wine Tasting is without question the finest book addressed to wine sensory technology that I have ever seen during my 41 years in wine. Being an academic, I am particularly impressed by the scientific support which Dr. Jackson provides for explaining human evaluation and interpretation of various wine aromas, flavors, virtues and vagaries. His text is, however, not beyond the comprehension and understanding of people who are not formally trained in the enological sciences. This book will also become a standard reference for the 325 students which study in my 4th-year Wine Appreciation class at Purdue University every semester. As a judge at several wine competitions across the U.S. every year, and as Chairman of the Indy International, one of the largest, I will make it a point that my fellow judges have the opportunity to learn of this essential work. Wine Tasting advances the state of the art." —Richard P. Vine, Purdue University, Indiana, U.S.A., Wine Consultant to American Airlines "The author should be commended for undertaking to write on this subject matter. Bringing the science of sensory evaluation to the wine industry is needed and the author has provided an extensive amount of information, some very solid reference material, all presented in a text that is easy to read. There are numerous tables and figures, referenced with both current as well as some important historical information. Information about the origins of the much maligned Davis wine scorecard is welcomed, especially for one of us (HS) who was one of the subjects while the scorecard was being developed. We expect that all winemakers will find this text informative and possibly will take some exception; none the less, much benefit will be derived from reading the text in its entirety, but probably not in one sitting! The author also discusses the relationship of wine writers and the science of sensory evaluation, a topic that gets relatively little coverage, yet it needs more discussion if the industry is to make the transition from a cottage industry to a packaged goods business. Sensory professionals also will benefit from this text and it should be part of the required reading for students in both enology and sensory evaluation. —Joel Sidel and Herbert Stone, Tragon Corp, California, U.S.A., authors of Sensory Evaluation Practises 2E "As a whole, the book is a generous package of information, thus updating and providing a scienctific background for sensory research on wine." —Hely Tuorila, Department of Food Technology, University of Helsinki

Table of Contents

1. Introduction2. Visual perceptions3. Olfactory sensations4. Taste and mouth-feel sensations5. Quantitative (technical) wine assessment6. Qualitative (general) wine tasting7. Types of wine8. Origins of wine quality9. Wine as a food beverage Glossary Index